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We Need To Talk About Kevin (2011)

“Just because you are used to something doesn’t mean you like it.”

Cast: Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly and Ezra Miller.

Even Supernanny couldn’t fix this child.

After her son goes on a killing spree, Eva tries to come to terms with her grief in this harrowing psychological thriller. For 15 years Eva has tried to relate to Kevin, yet he seems to grow ever more malevolent while playing his parents off of each other. We Need To Talk About Kevin is a truely gripping tale based on the novel by Lionel Shriver.

All the performances in this film are superb. I couldn’t fault them. The best coming from Swinton though who was a real tour-de-force amongst the rest. The way she conveys the mother really has the audience feeling for her, from her plain frustration to denial and helplessness, there is no doubt in my mind that she was perfectly cast. Eva loves her son, despite all the terrible and truly sadistic things he has done, because a mother’s love is unconditional and Swinton really captures this conflicting emotion.

Miller is brilliant in his role as Kevin. He has you hating him from the beginning thanks to some equally brilliant performances by Rock Duer and Jasper Newell in his earlier years. Rather than be a cliched evil child, Miller takes each action of Kevin’s and managaes to portray it with disturbing and truly hateful emotions. Kevin is downright evil and enjoys being so. It will honestly terrify you to see this child do sickening things without any remorse, because as we have come to learn, kids can be like this.

The use of sound and visuals really was great. It gives the movie that bit more of an edge and although this is Ramsay’s first film in over 9 years, it doesn’t show. She has slipped right back into the director’s chair without any difficulty.

The only bad thing I can detract from the film was Franklin, the father, who was played by Reilly. Reilly was good in his role, yet I hated his character. It seemed like Franklin wasn’t quite the father you would come to recognise in the real world. He didn’t seem to care for Eva’s worries or even consolidate her when she was going through a depressive state, which isn’t what you’d expect from a husband or father. While Reilly pulled off his part well, I felt like his character was the biggest flaw of the film.

Excellent performances all round, a truly gripping and terrifying story that is bound to have the audience in the palms of its hands.

Star rating: 8/10

Directed by Lynne Ramsay.

Running time 112 minutes.